I am a clinician specialising in paediatric infectious diseases and training in the UK. I graduated from Leicester University medical school in 2007 having also completed an Intercalated BSc in breast cancer pathology. On completion of my academic foundation years, I entered paediatric training in London as an Academic Clinical Fellow at Imperial College London. It was here that I developed an interest in meningococcal disease and the genomics of host and pathogen. I completed core registrar training and obtained a GRID sub-specialty infectious diseases, immunology and allergy training post in Newcastle upon Tyne in September 2014. I started my DPhil (funded by the Wellcome Trust) in October 2015, supervised by Martin Maiden and Chris Tang (Dunn School of Pathology) in genomic epidemiology of meningococcal disease in the UK and Ireland using Meningitis Research Foundation Meningococcal Genome Library (http://www.meningitis.org/current-projects/genome).
In the hospital environment, we see the wide range of disease spectrum on a daily basis. Within infectious diseases, there are two factors involved, host variation as well as the pathogen variation. As I have become more specialised, I see cases of increasing complexity and now appreciate the practical and conceptual challenges in identifying this variation in the host and micro-organism responsible. Genomics is becoming more frequently utilised in our diagnostics of both human immunodeficiencies and pathogen identification. Meningococcal disease is a fascinating disease to study as a model of disease (carriage, vaccination, recognising clinical signs, optimal treatment of sepsis), as well as an important paediatric infection with significant morbidity and mortality in the UK and elsewhere.
I am also interested in medical education and have spent time organising and researching peer-led teaching initiatives as well as being a clinical tutor/mentor at Imperial College and University College London.
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Brehony C, Rodrigues CM, Borrow R, Smith A, Cunney R, Moxon ER, Maiden MC. Distribution of Bexsero® Antigen Sequence Types (BASTs) in invasive meningococcal disease isolates: Implications for immunisation. Vaccine. 2016 Sep 7;34(39):4690-7.